So that the counselling service have been really, really helpful.
So tell me a little bit more about the counselling.
When did you seek that or was that offered to you?
It was offered to me.
From the hospital or from your GP?
From the hospital. Which I think they do offer it to you if you’ve been in Intensive Care anyway. But, and you usually have to wait quite a while, but they got me seen quite quickly because of the history. And they started I think about six weeks afterwards. And I realised they were happening but didn’t understand why. And they were weekly sessions.
With an Intensive Care specialist do you think or …?
I just know it’s the counselling service for the hospital, so yes.
Okay and was that helpful?
Very, because they were able to tell me what to put in place when I could feel them coming on. And very helpful to know that what I was experiencing is quite normal for people that have been in my situation. Because you think you’re going mad, or you don’t understand why you’re feeling like you are. So yes, a very, very difficult time.
And how long did the counselling continue for?
It was only meant to be for six weeks, but I was offered it for ten, because I needed it. And I’ve had a top up session since as well. So I know if I feel myself getting worse I can phone up and they’re happy to see me. And just having that is a psychological help.
Just knowing that there is some help there?
Yes. Yes. Yes.
When did you have the follow up? What sort of distance?
I think it was a couple of months. I’d managed to go a couple of months without any …
Okay. So you haven’t had any counselling for a while now then?
No. Not for a while. I still do have the odd panic attack. But know how to deal with it.
What sort of things, what sort of things did they suggest you do?
It’s called CBT therapy. Which I found very helpful. And even things, just doing this with your fingers and with your toes can be helpful, because you’re focusing your mind on something else. I, for myself, I feel I need to just go for a little walk or something. I don’t like just sitting down, I have to be up, because it does frightened me. So you get the palpitations and sweats, and not very nice feeling.
And what is it about lying down do you think that’s…?
The counsellor just thinks it’s being in Intensive Care with all the tubes and going back to what I said earlier I could hear it, hear not everything, but I heard a lot. I was obviously a little bit conscious to be able to hear things. And its, it’s from then. It’s from when you hear that you can’t communicate. So that seems to be the stem of it.
And you mentioned PTSD, did they give you a diagnosis of that did they?
Yes, yes, they did. Yes.
And do you feel you have that still or do you feel that that’s…
In some situations. We’ve been to theatre since and it seems to be with crowds or I think it seems to be, the lady who was my counsellor summed it up compl